Global warming will catastrophically impact Antarctic species
Monday 12 February 2007
Senior Zoological Society of London (ZSL) scientist Dr Alex Rogers will this evening (13th February 2007) explain the threat that climate change poses to a wide range of Antarctic species.
Speaking at ZSL’s scientific meeting on Evolution in the Marine Environment, Dr Rogers will comment on the inability of many species to adapt to the current rapid increase in temperature in parts of the Antarctic, the rate of which is far greater than has been seen historically.
“Global warming is going to have a catastrophic effect on some species found in the Antarctic region,” commented Dr Rogers. “These species have adapted to cold and icy conditions over millions of years and some will not tolerate the increases in temperature that are being recorded. Many species will struggle to survive in this changing environment. Animals such as penguins, whales and seals depend on these species for food, so impacts will occur across entire marine ecosystems.”
Dr Rogers, together with colleagues at the British Antarctic Survey, has edited a new thematic issue of the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society describing these ecosystem-wide changes to Antarctic ecosystems.
The scientific meeting will focus on patterns of evolution in marine species, including Antarctic animals such as Adelie penguins, seals and toothfish and animals from elsewhere such as whales, dolphins and fish. Dr Rogers added, “Man is having a dramatic effect on climate and this is likely to have a devastating effect on the wildlife of the Polar regions. Coupled with overexploitation of biological resources, failure to take action on global warming means that the situation will only deteriorate.”
— ENDS —
Notes to editors
Dr Alex Rogers will be available for interview on Monday 12th February – contact Alice Henchley (ZSL Press Officer) to arrange details.
High resolution photographs of penguins also available
Founded in 1826, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is an international scientific, conservation and educational charity: our key role is the conservation of animals and their habitats. ZSL runs London Zoo and Whipsnade Wild Animal Park, carries out scientific research in the Institute of Zoology and is actively involved in field conservation in other countries worldwide. www.zsl.org
The Evolution in the Marine Environment Scientific Meeting will be held on Tuesday 13th February 2007 at 6pm in the Meeting Rooms of the Zoological Society of London, Regent’s Park, NW1 4RY and is open to the general public. Admission is free.
Zoological Society of London
London NW1 4RY
tel: +44 (0)20 7449 6361 fax: +44 (0)20 7449 6362